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New collaboration looks to address Michigan’s growing nursing shortage

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Community colleges and 4-year-universities partnering to create new Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree

The hope of increasing the number of nurses across the state of Michigan comes through a collaboration with community colleges and four-year universities; the goal is to develop a Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, where, aspiring nurses can earn a bachelor’s degree at 28 new locations across the state.

According to a recent federal workforce analysis, Michigan currently has a severe nursing shortage for its population, and the stresses caused by the pandemic have only made things worse, as officials say, a number of nurses left the profession to find a better work life balance.

Dr. Lola Coke is the Dean of Grand Valley State University’s Kirkhof School of Nursing. She says it’s not just the pandemic that has made the situation a dire one.

“What we are seeing in Michigan, is about 30,000 nurses will retire by 2030,” Coke said. “So, they are really contributing to the nursing shortage.”

Hence, she says, the need for programs that encourage students to go into health care and provide the state of Michigan the next generation of nursing professionals.

In April, BHSH announced it is investing $19 million into GVSU’s nursing school that would provide financial aid, with the goal of increasing the number of nursing students at Grand Valley by 500 over the next six years.

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